Passing through Arcadia anytime soon? Be sure to stop for a cold treat at Michoacana, a Mexican ice cream shop located right along the main through-way. With a texture perched halfway between gelato and traditional American ice cream, and with a bevy of flavors that includes dulce de leche, pistachio and more, a scoop ($2.75-plus) is a frigid delight. Bring a cooler and grab a few popsicles ($2) to go, too. We're big fans of the cactus popsicle.
The seasonal poultry pie at Maison Blanche ($42) is definitely comfort food for gourmands. Foie gras, chicken and duck are ground and mixed with herbs and seasonings and then encased in a round thin pastry shell, then baked to golden and presented in a little puddle of aromatic reduction. Full of rich flavor, this elegant pie is extraordinary, and seems so high-Victorian that it could be served at Downtown Abbey. Lady Mary would approve and Mrs. Patmore wants the recipe.
The arugula and shaved cauliflower salad ($9) on Libby's Cafe + Bar's new menu is a winner: cauliflower, radicchio, butternut, squash, arugula, chopped candied cashews and lemon-pomegranate vinaigrette. It's the perfect starter or light lunch. We're in love.
Fresh Start Cafe's signature Israeli dish shakshuka ($11.25) may indeed be the freshest breakfast on the block. Shakshuka, which means "scrambled dish" in Hebrew, consists of two poached eggs that are smothered in a fresh picante tomato sauce that's made daily from locally sourced ingredients and spices. The dish is traditionally served with warm pita, and you have a choice of seasonal fruit or a side salad.
Located in an unremarkable Sarasota strip mall next to a Save a Lot and a Family Dollar, Silver Star Restaurant is a perfectly preserved example of a dwindling species: the family diner. Breakfast here is filling and inexpensive, with all your favorites well represented. There are pancakes and omelets, biscuits and muffins, and some of the city’s most splendiferous breakfast sandwiches—super-gooey concoctions built out of eggs, bacon, cheese and croissants. Don’t miss the hash browns, which give those at the Waffle House a run for their money.